Goldsmith and Jeweller

Jewellers and goldsmiths fabricate and repair jewellery such as rings, brooches, pendants and bracelets. They use fine precision tools to cut, saw, file and polish jewellery.manufacturing concerns, retail jewellers’ / goldsmiths’ and at repair shops. The environment is usually pleasant, hygienic and well equipped.

The jewellery manufacturing industry can be divided into two types of production:

Craftwork: Individual articles that are hand-made by skilled craftsmen

Mass production: Moulds and machines are used in order to produce a large number of articles in the shortest time possible.

Jewellers who work in jewellery stores and repair shops provide a variety of services to their customers. Much of their time is spent repairing jewellery and watches and doing hand engraving. Typical repair jobs include enlarging or reducing rings, resetting stones and replacing broken clasps and mountings.

Some jewellers also design jewellery to be made either by hand or mass-produced. They make moulds to cast jewellery and dies to stamp it. Other jewellery workers may do the finishing work such as setting stones and engraving. A small number are also qualified gemmologists, who identify, appraise, classify and discriminate between all kinds of gems, including diamonds.

Jewellers and goldsmiths shape the metal with hand tools or cast it in moulds, to their own designs or those created by designers. They then solder together individual parts to form the finished piece. They may cast designs in precious metal and mount diamonds or other stones on the piece.

Jewellers and goldsmiths use pliers, files, saws, hammers, torches, soldering irons and a variety of other hand tools. They also use chemicals and polishing compounds, such as jeweller’s rouge, for soldering or finishing.

Jewellers / goldsmiths work indoors at jewellery manufacturing concerns, retail jewellers / goldsmiths and at repair shops. The environment is usually pleasant, hygienic and well equipped.

Personal Requirements

  • at least 16 years old
  • artistic ability
  • patient, accurate and neat worker
  • perseverance and concentration
  • careful and reliable
  • mechanical, technical and practical aptitude
  • enjoy precise, detailed work
  • excellent eyesight
  • good manual dexterity and eye-hand coordination

How to Enter

Schooling & School Subjects

Compulsory Subjects: Art or a related subjects is highly recommended
Recommended subjects: Art, Design Studies, Engineering and Graphic Design


  • An art portfolio is required to demonstrate your creativity, abilities and commitment.
  • If you intend studying towards a degree in Fine Art at university, you will need to a Bachelor's pass in matric. If you intend studying a diploma in an art-related field, then you will need a Diploma pass in matric.
  • Meet the admission requirements (APS) set by the university or requirements set by the college.


What to Study

Diploma: CUT, DUT, TUT, CPUT and UJ offer a course in Jewellery Manufacture and Design. This includes practical training as well as training in Gemmology (training in the identification, classification and discrimination amongst all kind of gems). 

Certificate: Various TVET colleges offer programmes in Jewellery design.

There are four recognised learnerships:

  • Precious metal working and mounting - 5 years (Including diamond mounting)
  • Diamond and jewel setting - 5 years
  • Engraving - 4 years
  • Mounting and precious metal working - 3 years
Correspondence course at Technisa can also be followed. Practical training takes place under the supervision of qualified jewellers / goldsmiths.

Final examination: a compulsory trade test set by the Department of Labour to qualify as an artisan

Short part-time courses in Jewellery Design and Manufacture are offered by privately run operations.
Further studies overseas, some of which can be done via distance learning include:

Gemmology in Scotland:

Edinburgh University:

The Gemmological Association of Great Britain:
The Gemologist Institute of America (GIA):


  • jewellery manufacturers
  • retail goldsmiths and jewellers
  • jewellery, clock and watch repair shops
  • self-employment, skilled and entrepreneurial goldsmiths and jewellers can start their own businesses

Further Information

Jewellery Council of South Africa
The Hamlet,
27 Ridge Road,

Tel: (011) 484-5528

Getting Started

  • arrange to speak to jewellers and goldsmiths and observe them at work
  • try to obtain part time or vacation work in a jewellery shop

Programmes by Study Institutions

Related Occupations

University of Johannesburg: Faculty of Art, Design and Architecture

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